Mark Cuban raises his voice

Billionaire entrepreneur invests in makers of a click-to-call lead generator for Web sites.

Ben Charny Staff Writer, CNET News.com
Ben Charny
covers Net telephony and the cellular industry.
Ben Charny
Billionaire entrepreneur Mark Cuban says he has invested in Thinking Voice, a maker of click-to-call Internet links for e-mails, e-commerce Web sites, social networks and other Internet venues.

Cuban's cash infusion, the amount of which was not disclosed, will help Thinking Voice launch CallActivator, a technology it developed that sets up phone calls with a click of a Web link, the company announced on Wednesday.

Cuban now owns 10 percent of the company. Additional details of his investment were not disclosed.

CallActivator is at the heart of the company's new e-commerce network, which pays Web site operators based on the amount of sales leads they generate for manufacturers, rather than on click-throughs or actual product sales. It's a popular twist on traditional advertising models.

Thinking Voice generates some of its own cash by leasing its CallActivator technology, which costs $7 a month, or $69 a year.

"I like the pay-per-lead business," Cuban wrote in an e-mail.

Cuban sold Broadcast.com to Yahoo for $5.7 billion and is now president of HDNet, a provider of high-definition-television programming. He also owns the Dallas Mavericks basketball team.